Monday, February 22

8 am

Technical Paper Sessions (On-Demand)
Case Histories
Coastal and Inland Waterway Erosion Solutions
Environmental
Geosynthetic Advancements in Sediment Control Technologies
Geosynthetic Barriers
Geosynthetic Clay Liners
Geosynthetic Reinforced Bridge Abutments
Geosynthetics in Pavement Maintenance & Surface Treatment Applications
Ground Improvement
Innovative Applications
Landfills
Lightweight Backfills
Roadways
Testing and Properties 1 and 2
Walls, Embankments, & Slopes
Water Protection

8 am - noon Short Courses (included in full registration)

Joel Sprague, TRI Environmental; Markus Wilke, HUESKER Synthetic GmbH
Geosynthetic-enhanced erosion and sediment control systems are now used routinely in temporary construction site applications, as well as, in steep slope stabilization and shoreline and coastal erosion protection. On the construction site, geosynthetic-enhanced rolled erosion control products (RECPs) and sediment retention devices (SRDs) have become essential to pollution prevention plans. In permanent applications, geosynthetic solutions now include specially designed geotextile filters beneath hard armor systems, and deploying advanced erosion protection technologies such as anchored geotextiles, geocellular containment systems, fabric-formed concrete revetments, and sand-filled geosynthetic mattresses, tubes, and other containers. This short course will provide and detailed look at all these emerging technologies and how they are being used to cost-effectively protect against erosion from rainfall, runoff, streamflow, and shoreline wave action.

Stephan Gale and Nathan Lichty, Gale-Tec Engineering

Increased rainfall amounts and intensities, along with prolonged wet periods have created instabilities along our roadways and rivers/streams.  The exact causes of these vary, but the threat to public safety is a constant.  This short course will access the causes, discuss the evaluation of alternate solutions and present construction case histories which include a wide range of resilient solutions for each of the unique challenges presented.

This course will highlight recent projects that balance geotechnical needs, hydraulics, local and federal permitting requirements, wetland impacts, special river designations, costs, unique site constraints and aesthetic goals to arrive at cost-effective solutions.  Through a series of case histories, we will review design and constructed solutions ranging from hard armored riprap and sheetpile walls to vegetated geogrid reinforced soil slopes with various erosion resistant faces to shallow soil anchors and grouted hollow bar reinforcement.

Kerry Petrasic, Gannett Fleming
This short course provides an overview of geosynthetics, and is intended for individuals with a desire to explore the use of geosynthetic materials in design and construction applications, having a need to gain broad fundamental knowledge of the various geosynthetic types, materials and applications.  The course provides a basic definition of geosynthetics, explores the various material types and applications.  Geosynthetic materials presented and discussed include geotextile, geogrids, geocell, geomembranes and geofoam.  The importance is placed upon the desired function(s) in the selection of material class and type.  The prominent roles that polymer type and material physical structure is emphasized in the successful selection and desired performance of geosynthetics for a specific application, and the balancing of often competing needs.  Versions of this course have previously been presented at the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s “Transportation Management Training Workshop – TMTW” and the ASCE Central Pennsylvania Geotechnical Conference.

 

 

 

 

 

Noon - 4 pm Short Courses (included in full registration)

Dov Leshchinsky, University of Delaware and ADAMA Engineering; Daniel Alzamora, FHWA Resource Center
This short course provides the details of three, basically unrelated methods, for the design of geosynthetic-reinforced walls allowed in AASHTO 2020. Discussed are the Simplified Stiffness Method, the Limit Equilibrium Method, and the Simplified AASHTO Method. While the main focus will be on internal stability, aspects such as complex geometries, surcharge loads, external stability and seismic design will be discussed as well. Instructive examples will be used to demonstrate the fine points of each method while showing the differences in the design outcomes. To expand the number of comparative cases, both programs MSEW+ and ReSSA+ will be used. Reinforced slopes will also be briefly covered.

Abigail Gilson MS, PE, TRI Environmental; Jeff Blum, Weaver Consultants Group; Richard Brachman PE, Queens University 
The old adage that “all liners leak” does not have to be a foregone conclusion. All leaks in lining systems have a direct cause including accidents, installation issues, poor craftsmanship, inadequate material testing, and poor design decisions. A holistic approach to leakage is taken in this course to address both short-term and long-term sources of leakage. Using state-of-the-art Electrical Leak Location (ELL) technologies, leaks can be remedied before a containment facility is put into service. Employing best practices for Construction Quality Assurance (CQA) can eliminate leaks that develop over time due to poor installation practices. Performing proper material testing based on the most recent research on stress-cracking will significantly increase the service-life of the facility.  In short, the reduction or even elimination of leakage starts in the design phase with good project specifications. This course provides Engineers with the tools they need by teaching:

Course Outline:
The physics of ELL testing methods and how to maximize method effectiveness (Gilson-Beck)
Fundamentals of Electrical Leak Location

  • Available Methods
    • Bare Geomembrane methods
      • Water-based Methods
      • High Voltage-based Methods
    • Covered Geomembrane Methods
      • Dipole Method
    • Method specification
      • Liner cross-section and site configuration examples
      • Site-specific preparation
      • Design details: tie-in seams, penetrations, rain flaps
      • Actual, Blind and Artificial Leaks
      • Project specifications

Best practices in CQA specific to avoiding the formation of leaks (Blum)

  • Introduction of CQA
  • Routine CQA
  • Beyond the Routine
  • Comprehensive CQA
  • Post Construction

Material specification and testing for the reduction of long-term stress cracking (Brachman)

  • Theoretical equations for calculating leakage
  • Input parameters from the latest findings
    • Interface transmissivity between geomembrane and geosynthetic clay liner
  • Accelerated aging experiments
    • Polyethylene geomembrane rupture from gravel indentations
  • Assessing long-term effectiveness of geomembrane protection layers
  • Comprehensive CQA
  • Post Construction

Benefits & Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the physics of how ELL surveys work in order to maximize their effectiveness on your projects
  • Understand the advantages and limitations of the various ELL methods
  • Learn about cutting edge ELL technologies and methods
  • Learn the state-of-the practice CQA practices in order to avoid present and future leaks
  • Learn about the value of comprehensive CQA
  • Identify factors affecting long-term leakage and methods to reduce potential leakage
  • Calculate leakage for practical cases
  • Understand mechanism that may lead to long-term leakage
  • Understand methods to address geomembrane protection

Lilma Schimmel, HUESKER Inc and Alex Potter-Weight, Menard USA
This course will on focus the use of geosynthetics to address the challenges of construction on poor soil conditions. Commonly used and innovative techniques will be discussed at an introductory level, including Geosynthetic Encased Columns (GECs), Prefabricated Vertical Drains (PVDs), High Strength Basal Reinforcement and Load Transfer Platforms. Technical information about specification parameters and design using geosynthetics will also be introduced.

Tuesday, February 23

8 am

Technical Paper Sessions (On-Demand)
Case Histories
Coastal and Inland Waterway Erosion Solutions
Environmental
Geosynthetic Advancements in Sediment Control Technologies
Geosynthetic Barriers
Geosynthetic Clay Liners
Geosynthetic Reinforced Bridge Abutments
Geosynthetics in Pavement Maintenance & Surface Treatment Applications
Ground Improvement
Innovative Applications
Landfills
Lightweight Backfills
Roadways
Testing and Properties 1 and 2
Walls, Embankments, & Slopes
Water Protection

8 – 9 am

Jim Davidson

Jim’s first attempt to climb Mount Everest ended suddenly when a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal. This spawned massive avalanches and aftershocks that trapped Jim’s team high on the mountain. It became the deadliest day ever on Mount Everest. Jim returned in 2017 to try again. Along the way, his team had to endure eleven stormy days pinned in their tents, uncertain if they were going to be able to summit. Finally, conditions cleared and after persevering through the uncertainty, Jim and his team reached their goal.

From these intense experiences, Jim shares critical lessons for facing today’s uncertain times. He will share practical tips about:

 

• Building a resilient mindset for facing change, challenge & uncertainty

• Attitudes and actions to take before, during, and after big storms

• When to rely on passive perseverance vs. active perseverance

9:15 - 10:45 am

George Koerner, GSI, Joel Sprague TRI and Drew Loizeaux, Propex

High Performance Turf Reinforcement mats (HP-TRMs) have taken erosion control with natural vegetation to a whole new level. Reinforced vegetation can now handle many times the velocity and shear stresses of natural turf; sites that were once the sole domain of hard armor are now within the purview of HP-TRMs. 

This session will cover HP-TRM testing, properties, specifications and field case histories during the technical session.  The speakers will demonstrate the logic of combining engineering ideas and principles for improving the environment through earth-friendly erosion control practice and procedures. 

It will include discussions of: Concerns and mechanisms of channel and slope erosion, GS erosion control products currently available in the market,  simulated laboratory and field tests for identifying unique product variables for the purpose of documenting field behavior based on cost/benefit performance,  credible analytic modeling  and design guidance of situations from routine to exotic applications for both channels and slope erosion will be presented along with recommendations and conclusions.

Erosion and its control is a massive (and worthwhile) target application for geosynthetics.  Quantification of such HP-TRM enhancement will be discussed. In so doing, geosynthetic applications are compared insofar as their sustainability (i.e. embodied carbon) to the same applications using traditional construction materials. The status of geosynthetics erosion control materials and HP-TRMs will be offered.  It is felt that geosynthetics options are indeed viable for many of these extreme applications and will be dependable for very long service lifetimes. As such, geosynthetics provide better and longer performance than traditional materials as well as less costly solutions and thus enhance “relative sustainability.”  This takes into account all of the directly applicable material and labor requirements. As will be seen, the traditional civil engineering materials contribute greatly to the embodied carbon of any construction project. By avoiding or minimizing the use of these traditional materials through utilization of geosynthetics, the latter will help to reduce the inherent embodied carbon on projects where erosion control is an issue.

 

9:15 - 10:45 am

Moderator: Eli Cuelho, TRI Environmental and Jeb Tingle, USACE
There are several test methods and equipment styles currently used to measure the large-scale or full-scale performance of roadways that utilize geosynthetics as reinforcement and/or stabilization.  Designers ultimately desire to have performance data that are accurate and reflect the true benefit of using geosynthetics in roads so they can confidently use this information in design; however, many research projects often present confounding results or are inconclusive due to the lack of standardization.  Test methods are currently being developed that would benefit from the input of a broader audience to improve the likelihood of successful adoption and implementation.

11am - 12:30 pm

Jie Han, PhD, The University of Kansas
Geosynthetics have been successfully used to improve the performance of column-supported embankments over soft soils. Geosynthetic-reinforced column-supported embankments involve complex load transfer mechanisms, including soil arching, tensioned membrane, stress concentration, lateral restraint, and anchorage. Different theoretical models are available to describe soil arching but often result in different predicted stresses.  Due to three-dimensional layout of columns, tension distribution in geosynthetic reinforcement is spatial.  Column-soil stiffness difference induces soil arching and contributes to stress concentration and down-drag forces on columns. Side slopes of embankments promote lateral spreading and global instability that can be stabilized by lateral restraint and anchorage of geosynthetics. Localized surface loading further affects load transfer among soils, columns, and geosynthetics. This lecture will illustrate how theoretical solutions can be used to explain existing phenomena and solve practical problems in geosynthetic-reinforced column-supported embankments including required tensile strength of geosynthetic reinforcement, settlement, and global stability.    

11:30 am - 2:30 Exhibits Open
2:30 - 4 pm Special Session 2: Importance of Drainage, and Role of Geosynthetics, in MSE Structure Load-carrying Performance (Organized by AMSE)
2:30 - 4 pm

Moderator: Glen Toepfer, CQA Solutions, LTD
Over the past decade, the debate about destructive testing frequencies has heated up as the standard frequency of 1 sample per 500 lineal feet of welding has been criticized and challenged.  There have been numerous alternatives suggested, yet the most common specification found on containment projects remains the 1/500.

What factors should be considered in determining the appropriate sampling frequency?  Materials?  Weld type?  Experience?  Use of smart technology welding equipment?  Non-destructive seam testing failures?  Should the frequency be changed?  Should the change be universal for the industry or determined on a project-by-project basis?

A panel composed of key members representing a cross-section of the containment system industry will try to answer these questions and more in what is sure to be a lively discussion!

Wednesday, February, 24

8 am

Technical Paper Sessions (On-Demand)
Case Histories
Coastal and Inland Waterway Erosion Solutions
Environmental
Geosynthetic Advancements in Sediment Control Technologies
Geosynthetic Barriers
Geosynthetic Clay Liners
Geosynthetic Reinforced Bridge Abutments
Geosynthetics in Pavement Maintenance & Surface Treatment Applications
Ground Improvement
Innovative Applications
Landfills
Lightweight Backfills
Roadways
Testing and Properties 1 and 2
Walls, Embankments, & Slopes
Water Protection

8 - 9:30 am

Technical Paper Presentations – details coming soon

8 - 9:30 am

Moderator: L David Suits, LDS Geosynthetics Consulting Services
Panel members will review critical geosynthetics specifications in the areas of landfill systems, erosion control systems, pavement systems, earth structure systems, and drainage systems, focusing on the current pros and cons of each as well as potential future developments. Audience participation is strongly encouraged as potential improvements to the specifications are explored.

10 - 11:30 am

Technical Paper Presentations – details coming soon

10 - 11:30 am

Robert D. Holtz , II, Ph.D, P.E., D.GE
The design and construction of embankments on very soft foundations is one of most challenging geotechnical problems. Without some type of foundation soil improvement, failures are common especially on very soft sites. Soil reinforcement with geosynthetics is often the only economical solution, and some projects cannot be constructed without geosynthetics. The lecture begins with a brief overview of conventional treatments for soft ground construction. Some early case histories, mostly failures, are described that provided valuable lessons and concepts that we use today for design and construction. Analysis and design procedures are then outlined, along with the selection of the required properties for the geosynthetics and embankment soils. Sample specifications, cost considerations, as well as inspection and instrumentation are also described. Because proper construction is so critically important for success of these projects, a detailed discussion of construction procedures completes the course. Detailed lecture notes and copies of the course slides will be provided.

Course outline:
A. Soft foundations and conventional solutions
B. Case histories and lessons learned
C. Design steps and procedures
D. Soil and geosynthetics properties
E. Specifications, inspection, and cost considerations
F. Construction

Participants will be able to identify soft ground projects where geosynthetic reinforcement is feasible, understand design procedures and required soil and geosynthetic properties, and appreciate the critical importance of proper construction procedures.

11:30 - 2:30 Exhibits Open
2:30 - 4 pm

Panel Discussion – details coming soon

2:30 - 4 pm

Moderator: Mark Marienfeld, Propex Consultant
Arguably the largest asset of most transportation agencies is the unbound aggregate used as road support.  This huge asset does not receive the attention it deserves and is largely placed and forgotten.  Inadequate forensic research is conducted to prove to agencies that the degradation of aggregate layers is the root cause for most premature road failures, and unnecessary maintenance and repair.  Members of this panel will; explain the problem of base aggregate contamination, propose a simple geosynthetic solution, explain a Permanent Road Foundation, discuss stone requirements, verify DOT successes, explain FHWA oversight responsibility, explain the lack of transportation asset management attention, and identify research needs.  Interaction with the audience will be encouraged.  Goal is to bring more attention to the unnecessary loss of aggregate while verifying that a Permanent Road Foundation; reduces construction and maintenance cost, reduces road downtime and traffic congestion with the associated poor traffic safety statistics, and conserves resources and lowers our carbon footprint.

Thursday, February, 25

8 am

Technical Paper Sessions (On-Demand)
Case Histories
Coastal and Inland Waterway Erosion Solutions
Environmental
Geosynthetic Advancements in Sediment Control Technologies
Geosynthetic Barriers
Geosynthetic Clay Liners
Geosynthetic Reinforced Bridge Abutments
Geosynthetics in Pavement Maintenance & Surface Treatment Applications
Ground Improvement
Innovative Applications
Landfills
Lightweight Backfills
Roadways
Testing and Properties 1 and 2
Walls, Embankments, & Slopes
Water Protection

8 - 9:30 am

Subcommittee Chairs for ASTM International’s Committee D35 on Geosynthetics will share current, relevant hot topics being worked on in their groups. Subcommittees include Mechanical Properties, Endurance Properties, Permeability and Filtration, Geosynthetic Clay Liners, Erosion Control, Specifications, Geomembranes and Terminology.

8 - 9:30 am

This special session (part one of two) is a compilation of the research components of the NCHRP 24-41 report featuring technical paper presentations that include those aspects which led to recommendations for AASHTO modifications

Technical Paper Presentations:
Load-carrying GMSE Bridge Abutments: Lessons Learned from Experimental Evaluations
Amr Morsy, Ph.D., Loughborough University
Load-carrying GMSE Bridge Abutments: Lessons Learned from Field Monitoring Evaluations
Burak Tanyu Ph.D., George Mason University; and Fitsum Gebremariam, Ph.D., Arup
Load-carrying GRS Bridge Abutments: Lessons Learned from Field Monitoring Evaluations
Panpan Shen, Ph.D., Tongji University and Jie Han, PhD, University of Kansas

10 - 11:30 am

This special session (part two of two) focuses on recommendations for the design of L-C G-R Bridget Abutments.

Short Presentations:
NCHRP 24-41 recommended AASHTO Modifications
Jorge G. Zornberg, Phd, University of Texas
International perspectives on the design of L-C G-R Bridge Abutments
Jorge G. Zornberg, Phd, University of Texas
Evidence from FHWA’s GRS-IBS program that supports the adoption of closely spaced reinforcements
Jennifer Nicks, FHWA
General design and construction aspects from FHWA’s GRS-IBS program that apply to L-C G-R Bridge Abutments
Daniel Alzamora, FHWA

Q&A Panel Discussion
Moderators: Dov Leshchinsky, Barry Christopher
Panelists: Jennifer Nicks and Daniel Alzamora, FHWA; Jie Han, PhD, University of Kansas; Burak Tanyu, Ph.D, George Mason University; Jorge Zornberg, PhD, University of Texas

11:30 am - 2 pm Exhibits Open
2 - 3:30 pm

Moderator: Jordan Wiechmann, Plastatech Engineering, Ltd and Jen Miller Fabricated Geomembrane Institute

The Fabricated Geomembrane Institute at the University of Illinois has created a group titled, “Women in Geosynthetics (WIG)” in order to promote the advancement of women in the geosynthetics industry through education, networking and mentoring opportunities. Audience participation is the focus of this highly interactive discussion

The discussion will include, but is not limited to the following points of interest:

–        How can we recruit MORE women into the Geosynthetic Industry?

–        How can we create more opportunities in the industry for women?

–        What types of educational opportunities are out there to educate women throughout the industry?

–        Mentorship Opportunities

Earn up to 23 PDHs.
*schedule subject to change

More Education Options
Registration for the full registration with the Geosynthetics Conference provides access to the IECA 2021 Annual Conference programming too. Two conferences for the price of one. Please click here to view the IECA 2021 Annual Conference schedule-at-a-glance.

All posted times are in Central Standard Time (CST)